Always re-wrap cheese in fresh wrapping, preferably in waxed or parchment paper, after the cheese has been opened to avoid having the cheese dry out or pick up other flavors. If cheese is wrapped in plastic, the wrapping should be changed every few days to allow the cheese to breathe, and to keep the cheese from becoming slimy or discolored.
The recommended temperature range for storing many cheeses is between 35 and 45 degrees Fahrenheit, at a high humidity level.
If cheeses other than fresh cheeses and blues have surpassed their expiration dates (imprinted on the packaging) or if the cheese develops a blue-green mold on the exterior, make a cut about a Ĺ inch below the mold to ensure that it has been entirely removed; the remaining cheese will be fine.
Butter at room temperature quickly turns rancid when exposed to oxygen, so the usual means of preserving it is to store it in the refrigerator
. But all thatís really needed is to keep air away from the butter.
A French Butter Dish
(or Butter Crock, or Butter Bell) does this by using water
to form a seal between the butter and the air.
There are two parts
to the dish: a smaller, bell- or cone-shaped piece that sits on a wide base, and a second, larger container.
You fill the bell up with butter, put water
in the larger container, and invert the bell into the water. Because butter is basically an oil, it wonít mix with the water, and as long as itís not too hot, it will remain sticky enough to stay inside the bell.
You can keep this on your counter-top, so that butter is always available, without having to soften it.
Crocks keep butter fresh at room temperature (up to about 80̊ F) on the counter for several weeks without spoiling (at higher temperatures, the butter may slip out).